Day 38: Congregational excellencePosted: May 31, 2013 Filed under: 40 Day Walk With God, Bishop's Blog | Tags: 40 day walk, annual conference, bible, bill mcalilly, bishop, colossians, memphis, Methodist, Prayer, tennessee, UMC, united methodist 2 Comments
Colossians 3:17 (Read verses 12-17)
Whatever you do, whether in speech or action, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus and give thanks to God the Father through him.
I was walking along the sidewalk and noticed a little boy playing in a yard under the watchful eye of his grandfather. The little boy had a stick in his hand which he was obviously using as a sword. It was also obvious that he was winning this mock battle. As I reached him, he offered me the stick. I told him that he could keep it for himself. He ran over to his grandfather, they talked, the grandfather said, “He really wants you to have this stick.” I dropped to my knees in front of the boy, extended my hands to receive my gift. As he handed it to me he said, “This is a magic sword. It will keep dragons away.” I thanked him for the gift. He was happy and so was I, for I haven’t had a dragon problem since that day.
We have been given a powerful gift to help make our congregations healthy. It isn’t magic, but it is effective. Listen prayerfully to what Paul said: “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17).
If we incorporate these two things into our planning and our prayers, greater things can happen. If everything we do is done in the name of Jesus Christ, our ministry will be focused. Any program, any activity, which doesn’t meet this criteria wouldn’t be done, freeing up time for needful things.
Our gratitude will open our hearts and lives to a deeper experience of God’s grace. Gratitude is our response to the love God has given us through Jesus the Christ.
No, it isn’t magic, but this gift of God can keep a congregation healthy and fruitful.
Prayer Focus: Look at all the activities your congregation leads or takes part in and raise this question, “Does everything we do fit the mission of making disciples?” and, how much of your prayer time is spent expressing gratitude to god? How much “thank you,” as compared to, “give me.”
The Rev. Harrell Nation, Jr.
Brownsville District Superintendent,-Memphis Conference
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REFLECTIONS FOR THE DAY | Use a program on your computer, a traditional journal, or feel free to use the comment section of this blog post to record your reflections as a conversation with others…
READ – What spoke to me as I read today’s meditation?
REPENT – Where is God showing me that I have failed to be obedient to the call to discipleship today?
RECEIVE – What words of redemption and grace is God offering to me?
REMEMBER – Who and what is God calling me to remember in prayer related to today’s reading?
RESPOND – How is God calling me to respond today?
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Receiving a gift is sometimes more difficult than giving one. In receiving gracefully we are also giving. Jesus receives our sins and cleanses us.
What a huge gift! However, there are people, who for their own reasons, refuse the gift. We should receive gratefully the gifts from other people and God.
Thanks Harold-good illustration